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On behalf of our 20,000 member companies, the New Jersey Business and Industry Association (NJBIA) strongly supports A-4432, (Schaer/Lampitt/Benson). This legislation allows certain businesses having collaborative research relationships with institutions of higher education to receive tax credits under the Grow New Jersey Assistance Program.  We urge you to vote “yes” when the bill comes before the Assembly Commerce and Economic Development Committee for a vote on June 12, 2017.

Many of the nation’s most dynamic regional economies are situated around public research universities and other public and private colleges.  It is the creative atmosphere of the college or university campus — the faculty, the students and the other companies located in the area — which together boosts economic growth.

Right now, there is a similar environment of innovation at New Jersey’s public research universities and our other colleges which needs to be harnessed by attracting businesses to locate near the State’s colleges and universities.  This will benefit the institutions, their students, and the State overall.

A-4432 encourages economic development near New Jersey’s public research universities, and our other state colleges or universities, community colleges, and independent colleges.  The legislation amends the “Grow New Jersey Assistance Program” to establish certain tax credits for an eligible business that locates within three (3) miles of the outer boundary of these higher education institutions, and establishes a collaborative research relationship with the college or university.

Creating incentive areas around colleges and universities that recognize a variety of relationships between businesses and higher education institutions will attract jobs and tax paying businesses to the university environment.  This will help create technology clusters to spur economic growth, innovation, and discoveries.  The higher education institutions will also benefit from having access to private sector companies that will provide both educational and employment opportunities to students and graduates.

Once again, NJBIA strongly supports A-4432, and we urge you to vote “yes” when the bill comes before the Assembly Commerce and Economic Development Committee for a vote on June 12, 2017.  Thank you for considering our views and should you have any questions or need further information, please contact me at 609-858-9512.

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